09 November 2017
Letter from Mr Timothy Marshall
Jimmy Savile was a pervert and a predatory paedophile. There was no investigation and no attempt was made to stop him by the BBC, the media or the police. When his activities were eventually revealed, the BBC tried to compensate for past failures and libelled an innocent man, Lord McAlpine. They had to apologise and pay damages.
The Jimmy Savile affair, as it was called, also resulted in overreactions by two police forces: the Metropolitan Police under the auspices of Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe and the Wiltshire Police under Mike Weale. The Met. believed everything the witness “Nick” said and, astonishingly, the more lurid his allegations, the more he was believed. He is now under investigation himself on suspicion that that he may have perverted the course of justice.
Meanwhile the Met. have had to pay compensation to people wrongly accused, such as Lord Bramall. Harvey Proctor, who was the target of the most unpleasant allegations, is suing the Met., and has indicated that he has no intention of settling his claim for damages.
The Wiltshire Police spent £1.5 million on the investigation into Sir Edward Heath. For reasons best known to themselves, they thought he was a paedophile. There are now calls for the decision by the Wiltshire Police to pursue the investigation to be the subject of a judge led inquiry.
If there is a discernible thread, it is this: when a failure to act has been identified and revealed, there is an hysterical overreaction.
There are now allegations and rumours swirling round Westminster; one casualty is Sir Michael Fallon who has fallen on his sword and resigned as the Secretary of State for Defence. There must be a risk that people will make allegations that are trivial, malicious or spiteful. If the phenomenon that is overreaction comes to prevail in Westminster, innocent MPs may be destroyed.
What is needed is some sense of perspective and mature judgement in Westminster. However, this seems unlikely; after all we are dealing with politicians. The snowflake was landed.